My 3 Favorite Proteins for a Sack Lunch

The school year is solidly underway and that means it’s time to share our three favorite proteins for a sack lunch. I don’t know what it’s like for you, but packing my child’s lunch can feel downright stressful! I want:

1. Easy
2. Healthy
3. Something my child will actually eat.

1. Brined Smoked Chicken Cubes

Our family LOVES brined chicken. If you have the capacity to smoke the chicken, it takes it to a whole new level.

1. Add 1/2 cup salt to a 1/2 gallon of water and stir together.
2. Add enough brine to a bowl to cover two packages of thawed boneless chicken breasts. (Save the remaining brine for another meat or use multiple packages of chicken.)
3. Place in refrigerator for at least 2 hours or up to overnight.
4. Drain chicken from brine and cook chicken on a smoker.
5. Once cooked and cooled, cut into small cubes.

My kiddos love eating the chicken on its own, using it in chicken wraps or chicken salad. It is just SO versatile.

Bonus: I always make extra and put some in the freezer. It’s so handy to have around for those days when you’ve lost your capacity for planning yet another meal.

2. Hard Boiled Eggs

Hard boiled eggs with a dash of salt are an easy way to pack protein into a lunch. Easy and simple for the win!

3. Vanilla Greek Yogurt

My kiddos love vanilla Greek yogurt. It’s by far their favorite way to consume dairy. JakoPure squeezable yogurts are perfect for a lunch. It’s frozen when you leave home and just the right temperature at lunch.

Sometimes I pack the squeezable form or other times I fill a container with blueberries or a little homemade granola to eat alongside. Vanilla Greek yogurt is almost always a win when I send it along.

As a homeschooling family, we only pack lunch once a week when we attend our co-op. Hats off to all of you parents who pack five days a week. You are amazing!!

Story from the Farm

This week one of our sows gave birth for the first time. It is so fascinating to watch a sow with her piglets as it is quite a contrast to cows or sheep.

When a pig is ready to give birth, she lies down on her side. Once a piglet is born, it makes its way down to the mother’s udder. As the piglet takes its first steps on its quest to find milk, its umbilical cord stretches and pulls apart from mom. The sow continues to lay on her side and give birth to a piglet about every 10-15 minutes. Older sows can often have litters of 12-14!

While pigs do not lick off their young like a cow or sheep, they are still excellent mothers! Our dog, Ollie, has been run off by many protective mama pigs! It never gets old to learn and observe the unique characteristics of animals.